Is it against etiquette......

Discussion in 'Campground Etiquette' started by Greywuff, Feb 8, 2012.

  1. Greywuff

    Greywuff Member

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    Hypothetical situation...last summer several couples, DW and I included, camped at our favorite CG. We tried to get waterfront sites, but had to settle for sites across the road from the water, which ended up to be ok. THere was a large area between 2 lots that didn't seem to be a part of either lot, so several of us used this area to approach the river. This year, we are planning on using the same CG and hopefully the watefront lots, as I have a new kayak and am plannng on using the river.
    My question.....IF...If we are not fortunate enough to get the waterfront lots, it is against etiquette to use such an area to access the river? Or am I "trespassing" on the other people? Is it ok to ask permission from the people on either side of the open area to access the river through that area if we dont get the lot?
    It would be much easier to access the river through this means than having to load the kayak and gear and truck it to the dock. But, I don't want to be the guy that everyone writes about on Tuesday morning after I cut across their lot on Sunday and monday with my kayak.
     
  2. Leyster

    Leyster Revelstoke, B.C.

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    In 2 of the CG's that we frequent there is a pathway between some of the waterfront lots to allow access to the shore. I would think if you are being eyed by the campers facing that area it would be nice to say hi and ask if is ok.
     
  3. electronflux

    electronflux Member

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    ^^This is what I would do^^

    even if you're not being eyed, if the site/sites are occupied, being neighborly goes a long way. And you may make a friend or 5.
     
  4. Bullfrog Bheer

    Bullfrog Bheer Active Member

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    It can't hurt to ask.
     
  5. marcham

    marcham New Member

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    If there's a path, use it! I've seen many lakeside campgrounds were you get a lot less privacy if you camp lakeside. We'll often choose something across the street and avoid the foot traffic walking by 5' away from our campsite eyeing all our kit.
     
  6. papachaz

    papachaz New Member

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    we like to camp on the waterfront sites as much as possible. but i've never considered the waterfront mine, i mean other campers wanna fish too. it is much nicer when someone at least says hi, or do you mind or something along those lines.

    the last time we camped 'on the water' was last fall at High Falls State Park. we had one of the better trails going down to the river right by our campsite. not once did someone go through it without saying one of the above. the people across the road from us even had preteen boys that would ask before they'd go down to fish....i was very impressed with them.

    never hurts to ask, but in the very least, acknowlege your 'intrusion'.
     
  7. Travelhoveler

    Travelhoveler New Member

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    It's public land. You've paid for it as well. It certainly is a nice gesture to ask, but go ahead and access the lake if you wish. Paying a camping fee doesn't convey a registered title to the land.

    I really don't have the same issues some do with people crossing my site. If they're quiet and don't bother me, there's no problem.

    Some people get bent all out of shape. Just smile and ignore them.
     
  8. PDieter

    PDieter Member

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    everyone has discussed the etiquette involving the campers, no one has discussed the etiquette of maintaining the riparian environment. There isn't enough information to venture an opinion but accessing river bank "willy nilly" can do real damage. In a developed campground I would expect any trail being cut to the river in an undesirable area would be blocked by the campground staff, but if there isn't already a trail you may not want to be the person that tramples it and the shoreline getting the attention of the staff and barricades. Maybe ask the "rangers' first if accessing the riverbank is acceptable there, especially as a hand boat launch (which can really "damage" a river bank over time).

    Maybe the area between sites was left undeveloped for a reason. Realize that this is coming from a camper in the NW where our rivers might have unique qualities. The OP hasn't listed a home location.
     
  9. Idahawk

    Idahawk " Esta Perpetua "

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    You may not own the land, but you did rent the spot same as if you rented a motel room and people don't walk through you room to get to the pool do they ?

    If someone asked me to access the water through my site I would be stunned first of all and would gladly agree , most people have the free country attitude and it is rude to violate someones space for any reason. The fact is its going to happen and little can be done to stop it. Reason #46 why I boon dock.

    As far as the vegetation goes if your at a campground near the water then chances are there are 1000 trails to the water both made by man and animals, if the area is fragile Eco system then it will be marked as such .
     
  10. CaliforniaPoppy

    CaliforniaPoppy California and beyond!

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    On your way into the park, ask the person at the gate/kiosk/etc. about the best way to access the water from your site. They'll let you know if the area in question is legit or not.
     
  11. papachaz

    papachaz New Member

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    but i sure can't stop them from walking past the door as they go down the hallway to get to the pool. if there's a beaten path in an open area between two camp sites, or at the edge of a campsite, it's the same thing. if someone is fishing along the edge of the water and walking the shoreline, i don't have a problem with them 'passing through'. i certainly would see less of them if they stop at my site, walk the border of it all the way around to get back to the water on the other side.

    the ones that would tick me off would be not returning the favor if i was the one doing the fishing afterwards.

    guess the safest thing though is to ask at check in.
     
  12. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    I agree with Idahawk on the "temporary possession" concept of the campsite. When I pay for it it is "mine" for the time I do so and anyone cutting through it is doing the same thing as if they cut through my yard at home. Anytime anyone cuts across my site I immediately call them on it and ask them not to do it again. OTOH, I've seen many situations where a regular trail has been established between campsites, usually as a shortcut to cross a loop in the middle, from one side to the other. Sometimes the toilet is located in the middle and the trail allows access from both sides of the loop. That is obviously OK and people who camp adjacent to such trails have to expect foot traffic going by their site but not on it.

    As for the OP's situation, it seems that the area he wants to use is not part of another campsite but it is not clear if there is an actual trail there or if he is crossing "virgin" ground. I'd say that the best thing to do is to check with the CG management to determine if using that area for that purpose is OK.
     
  13. Greywuff

    Greywuff Member

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    I guess I kinda left it open, didn't I? The area on question seemed to me to be about the size of the lots on either side, but, there were no hookups on this area. It look, for all practical purposes, like "no man's land". I walked across this area last summer, but only when there was no one in either lot, they had gone someplace. I took some photos while standing on the edge of the water there. In fact, someone had left a rather nice kayak sitting just out of the water in that area. I assumed it probably belonged to someone from either side, but again, I have no way of knowing. There is a ramp at the entrance of the park and the CG has john boats and canoes for rent. I saw many kayaks on the water, I dont know where they were launched from.
    As I have been accused of having conversations with fence posts, I would have no problem with asking someone if they had an objection to me accessing the water if they were "at home" when I decided to go. Of course, if they wern't home and I launched, if they were home when I came back, I would approach and ask if it were OK if I went back to my site...having no idea what I would do if they said no.
    Judging by the responses so far, it doesn't seem to be a clearly defined, cut and dry answer. I guess I should just approach someone if they are there, introduce myself and see what happens. I have read many times about people being upset with others cutting through their site, although I cant say I have ever had that happen to me. I was just wondering if there was a rule I was unaware of and was going to cause a problem if I did it. I guess it all depends on who has the sites on either side of "no man's land."
     
  14. Twisty

    Twisty New Member

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    Sounds like most of us create our own rules [LOL] [?:~{] ...
     
  15. nhcaveman

    nhcaveman Barrington, NH

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    I have seen people go right through others campsite to get to the other road, I have even done so, but would never do so without asking first. And for the most part would go around, but have seen people just walk through wothout a care in the world, I just think it's rude.
     
  16. JeepMama

    JeepMama New Member

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    I try to not walk thru others sites as much as possible, if I some how end up there, I apologize..

    I was never more mortified as a couple of summers ago when I went on my Uncle in-laws pontoon boat on Saranac Lake in NY. There are state campsites along the shore and he pulled up to a beach and had us all get out. The beach was right in front of someones campsite and the lady protested, and my Uncle-in-law engaged in an heated argument with her about the beaches/lake being state land for everyones use... I guess as he never camps there, he feels like the campers take over the secluded beach areas that boaters might like to enjoy...

    its hard to say who is correct him or her, I can see both points of view, but I wanted so badly to get away from that very uncomfortable situation.

    I don't think I would have appreciated someone parking their boat in front of my campsite, getting out to swim near the beach. But, where are the boaters supposed to go if all the beaches along the shore are for the campers only???
     
  17. Xolthrax

    Xolthrax Franconia, Pa.

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    If there is an established trail, that's one thing. If you are trampling virgin growth, that's quite another. "Fragile" ecosystems are all around you, and you won't find signs pointing them out.

    Leave No Trace – Outdoor Ethics for Frontcountry

    Know Before You Go
    Be prepared! Remember food and water, and clothes to protect you from cold, heat and rain.
    Use maps to plan where you’re going. Check them along the way so you’ll stay on course and won’t get lost.
    Remember to bring a leash for your pet and plastic bags to pick up your pet’s waste.
    Learn about the areas you plan to visit. Read books, check online and talk to people before you go. The more you know, the more fun you’ll have.

    Stick to Trails and Camp Overnight Right
    Walk and ride on designated trails to protect trailside plants.
    Do not step on flowers or small trees. Once damaged, they may not grow back.
    Respect private property by staying on designated trails.
    Camp only on existing or designated campsites to avoid damaging vegetation.
    Good campsites are found, not made. Don’t dig trenches or build structures in your campsite.

    Trash Your Trash and Pick Up Poop
    Pack it in, Pack it out. Put litter–even crumbs, peels and cores–in garbage bags and carry it home.
    Use bathrooms or outhouses when available. If not available, bury human waste in a small hole 6-8 inches deep and 200 feet or 70 big steps from water.
    Use a plastic bag to pack out your pet’s poop to a garbage can.
    Keep water clean. Do not put soap, food, or human or pet waste in lakes or streams.


    Leave It As You Find It
    Leave plants, rocks and historical items as you find them so others can enjoy them.
    Treat living plants with respect. Carving, hacking or peeling plants may kill them.

    Be Careful with Fire
    Use a camp stove for cooking. Stoves are easier to cook on and create less impact than a fire.
    If you want to have a campfire, be sure it’s permitted and safe to build a fire in the area you’re visiting. Use only existing fire rings to protect the ground from heat. Keep your fire small.
    Remember, a campfire isn’t a garbage can. Pack out all trash and food.
    Firewood should be either bought from a local vendor or gathered on site if allowed. Don't bring firewood from home - it can harbor tree killing insects and diseases. Many states regulate the movement of untreated firewood.
    Before gathering any firewood, check local regulations.
    Burn all wood to ash and be sure the fire is completely out and cold before you leave.

    Keep Wildlife Wild
    Observe wildlife from a distance and never approach, feed or follow them.
    Human food is unhealthy for all wildlife and feeding them starts bad habits.
    Protect wildlife and your food by securely storing your meals and trash.

    Share Our Trails and Manage Your Pet
    Be considerate when passing others on the trail.
    Keep your pet under control to protect it, other visitors and wildlife.
    Listen to nature. Avoid making loud noises or yelling. You will see more wildlife if you are quiet.
    Be sure the fun you have outdoors does not bother anyone else. Remember, other visitors are there to enjoy the outdoors too.
     
  18. cwolfman13

    cwolfman13 Active Member

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    I think that if, indeed, this is "no mans land" between two sites and has a trail, you're fine and well within your rights. I have stayed at many a CG that has these "no mans lands" between sites just for this reason. I'd give a neighborly wave and a howdy though.....some people do think the boundries of their site are extensive.
     
  19. Idahawk

    Idahawk " Esta Perpetua "

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    " Virgin Growth " Are talking about a water front campground or wilderness area ?
     
  20. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    I know that at the ocean beach there is a strip of land that extends a certain distance (I think it's ten feet) above the high tide line that is public domain. Anyone can walk there and use the area for swimming, etc., even if it is in front of a private residence. There have been many fights about this here in the Puget Sound area. I used to live on an island in the Sound and some home owners had fenced off the "road ends" (where public roads running toward the water stop, usually even with the front of the lot line) to block public access to the beach. There were suits and they had to remove the fences. That being said, I would never, never go plop myself in front of someone's house like that. It may not be illegal but it is RUDE! I'm thinking that many states may have similar rules for strips of land along lake beaches or river banks. But, even if they do, that does not mean one has the right to cut through a campsite or tear up virgin ground to get to the strip. It should be accessed via an appropriate route.
     

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